World Media

Australian Parliament says yes to same-sex marriage in landslide vote

Australian Parliament says yes to same-sex marriage in landslide vote

Australian Parliament has given a go ahead to same sex marriages.

In a historic move, the same-sex marriage bill was passed through the House of Representatives. "Australia has done it", Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull told the House. "This is Australia: fair, diverse, loving and filled with respect".

Labour Opposition Leader Bill Shorten hailed the passing of the bill as a uniting moment for Australia, adding: "Now is the time for healing".

"It's a historic day for Australia today and I think the celebrations around the country when we finally ... achieve marriage equality are going to be enormous", Greens party senator Janet Rice said.

Marriage equality campaigners have fought for years for Thursday's vote.

"We thank all Australians for their support for saying yes, we thank all those who have campaigned for many years, for over 10 years, for fairness and equality".

About 12.7 million people participated in the survey, which had a response rate of almost 80% - which is considered very high.

The next day, Liberal MP Andrew Wallace, who is a devout Catholic, shared with his colleagues how his gay daughter helped change his position on same-sex marriage.

Lawmakers approved the bill less than a month after the Australian Bureau of Statistics announced the majority of voters who took part in a non-binding plebiscite on whether gays and lesbians should be able to legally in the country said "yes".

Out of 150 MP's, only 4 voted against the marriage equality bill.

Here are some facts about same-sex marriage around the world: * Same-sex marriage is legal in 26 nations: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greenland, Iceland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Uruguay, United States.

Applause reportedly rang out in the viewing gallery when the bill was passed.

Several parliamentarians who supported the changes wore rainbow-coloured socks or ties, including Warren Entsch, described in local media as a "fiercely heterosexual... crocodile-farming, bull-catching Liberal".